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Brushy Mountain Trail is a 11.2 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Gatlinburg, Tennessee that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November. Horses are also able to use this trail.

Length 11.2 mi Elevation gain 3,064 ft Route type Out & Back
Hiking Horseback riding Nature trips Bird watching Running Forest Views Wild flowers Wildlife No dogs
Description
Waypoints (0)

Note: As of August 2020, the road to the trailhead is closed which adds an extra mile in both directions. The trail is closed for maintenance on Monday through Thursday (except federal holidays).

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (48)
Photos (493)
Recordings (33)
Completed (132)
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John Uaz
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 16, 2020
HikingBugsMuddyOver grown

The road to the trailhead is closed which adds an extra mile in both directions. The trail is closed for maintenance on Monday through Thursday (except federal holidays). The path is sometimes muddy and overgrown, but overall it was one of the best trails we have done so far. The fact that the trailhead is not readily reachable and the trail not always open makes it extremely low trafficked. During the 7 hour hike we met only a couple of people on the top that got there from other trails. There aren’t lookouts through the hike and the top of brushy mountain is extremely brushy, making it difficult to appreciate the landscape. However, there is a wonderful small waterfall 6 miles in and because of the low traffic it’s excellent to spot wildlife (we even saw two squirrels fighting). A walking stick might help with the many spiderwebs across the path, the muddy conditions, and to move some of the brush while you navigate the trail.

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Tim Grosjean
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 24, 2020

The road is out on the way to the trail, so you have to park on the side of the road where the road is closed and walk to the start of the trail. All said and done, the total out and back is now 14.5 miles. It's still pretty rewarding. the last 1/2 mile is awesome. The trail is a very steady incline the whole way out, but not overwhelming. A lot of the trail is grooved out, so it piles with water puddles in the rain (it poured on us out there). As others have said, there are a good amount of fallen trees to get over. We only saw 2 other people out there, so it's nice and remote if you like that.

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Larry Durand
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 4, 2020
HikingBlowdown

About 15-25 large dead hemlocks across the trail, but not too bad to scramble over. Grotto falls beautiful.

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Scott Brady
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HikingBlowdownMuddy
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Zac Crickenberger
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarDecember 22, 2019
Hiking

Brushy Mountain provides a decent little trail that feeds into Trillium Gap up to Mount LeConte. Even though it was raining it was still pleasant with several waterfalls in a large raging river. The look out of the top was covered with thick grass making it a little difficult to see the mountains but I assume that’s how it got its name. Also there was a graveyard from the late 1800s and early 1900s few miles into the trail.

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Cian-Patrick Farmer
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HikingIcyMuddyOver grownSnow

Really enjoyed the hike. Pretty steady incline all the way to the top. Though, it was fairly overgrown and hard to see and maneuver at times. A few downed trees blocking the path towards the top that were a little difficult to cross when iced over as well. The view at the top is exactly as the name describes it, a brushy top, but the scenery out was amazing.

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B. BIV
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarDecember 7, 2019
Hiking

hike well worth it started at the porters Creek trailhead. mild weather wonderful views

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Morgan Wilson
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HikingMuddyOver grown

Good hike. Walking under grotto falls on the way was cool. The trail is half way to LeConte Lodge. We went in July and it was very muddy and grown up so it was hard to walk the narrow path without brushing up against the bushes. Also, harder to see out.

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Jacob miller
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 23, 2019
HikingRocky

Less traveled marvel. About a 4 mile drive down a stone road to get to the trail head, but worth it. Even saw a bear cub cross the trail from the river about 40 yards in front of us.

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Liz Guieu
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarDecember 29, 2018

Nice trail ! steady incline no up and down some trees on the trail though. beautiful view at the top although the top is just bushes that hide the view during the picnic ...

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Annette Winston
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Great views from the top. I don’t find it all that strenuous, but I go up past Grotto Falls.

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Andrew Marinko
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Hiking

Took the trail via Grotta Falls. The Falls were very awesome and I was able to hike underneath them to get to the other part of the trail. The first stretch was extremely busy but after the Falls there were much less people hiking to Brushy Mountain. The Mountain itself had some great views but it was extremely muddy. There were also lots of bees at the top of the mountain

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Sherry Cotter
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beautiful in the snow

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Lori Yankowski
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wow way up there!!! great fall hike...

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Whitney Fies
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Hiking

This is a wonderful summer hike. Until the last 0.15 miles, you are under the tree line, keeping you relatively cool. Like another reviewer said, don't go just after a rain or the last 0.1 mile will be an impenetrable mud way. The foliage changes and insect variety on the way up/down is fantastic.

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Emily Ellison
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Hiking

Went by way of Grotto Falls. Got up to Brushy Mountain and it was so thick with mud we had to turn around. Still got some great photos and saw some amazing views. Would like to go back when it hasn't rained in a while.

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Brittany Lynn
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Vigorous uphill climb on well maintained trail. Enjoyed passing Grotto Falls and Trillium Gap on the way to spectacular view. If allergic to bees, do not take this trail. They didn't bother us but there were hundreds of thousands at the top, just doing their job. The sound of their buzzing was incredible.

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Mitchell Brice
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 3, 2017
Hiking

When I went it was snowing and there was about 4.5 inches of snow throughout the entire hike. It was amazing. Hike was exactly as described. Great view, but not 360 degree.

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Ben Bradley
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Hiked up from Grotto Falls. Real nice climb beautiful view. With cute and tiny foot path at the end.

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Micajah Spoden
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 20, 2016
Hiking

I enjoy unique challenges on a trail but the overgrown briar patches were brutal on my legs. Should've worn pants. Views up top made it all worth it.

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Lydia Watson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 19, 2016
Hiking

Gets your blood pumping. Hiked through from Grotto falls. I liked the narrow intimate path that leads to the 360 view at the end. My guide said there was a clearing at the summit, but there was none. Saw one snail, mole and squirrel on the way.

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Steven Pierce
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 2, 2016
Hiking

To reach the Brushy Mountain trail, drive to the end of the road at the Greenbrier section of the GSMNP and hike in 1 mile on the Porters Creek trail. At the circle, Porters Creek trail continues left. Brushy Mountain trail is on the right just past the short spur to the Messer barn and historic Smoky Mountain Hiking Club cabin, worth a visit. The Brushy Mountain trail climbs steadily and in some spots steeply with some views of Mt. LeConte and the high ridges of the Smokies along the way. As you near Trillium Gap Brushy Mountain comes into view. The ridge that makes up the mountain is covered with rhododendron and sand myrtle, so it is easy to recognize. At 4.5 miles you reach Trillium Gap. Make a right turn to stay on the trail to the summit. It is 0.4 mi. to the top with good views of Mt. LeConte on the right side and Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge on the left. Short spur trails lead to a couple viewpoints. The return is back the way you came. This out-and-back hike is a good workout - about 3000 ft. elevation gain - but with some nice views and small waterfalls along the way.

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elizabeth lewis
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJuly 10, 2015
Hiking

Adam Prather is spot on in his review. I can't remember a trail I detested more. Best part was the Trillium Gap junction that leads to Mt. LeConte which was my terminus.

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